After 18 hours of research evaluating 42 products, we picked Nespresso Pixie by Breville as our top choice.
Ready to change the way you think about single serve coffee makers? We’ve lined up the best Nespresso machine options to do just that - and we’ve read through thousands of Nespresso reviews to get to the absolute best.
Nespresso vs Keurig:
If you’ve always found Keurig pods to be weak (which some people do), don't worry. Nespresso pods are bold and full of flavor. And, you’ve got more options than you think when it comes to the pods you choose.
In addition, Nespresso pods are totally recyclable (unlike K-cups). You get the convenience of the push system without the ecological guilt that goes with it. Sounds good so far, right?
And, you’re going to love the speed at which these machines deliver the perfect cup of coffee every single time.
Before you rush off to buy the best Nespresso machine for you (which we seriously recommend doing), there's something you need to know. There are two types of Nespresso pods (and therefore machines) and they’re not interchangeable.
If you buy an Original Line Nespresso Machine, you need to buy Original Line pods. If you go for a VertuoLine Nespresso Machine, you’ll need VertuoLine pods.
Now that we've got that out of the way, let's get to the list.
This Nespresso CitiZ & Milk Espresso Machine by De'Longhi delivers the perfect cup of espresso or coffee every single time. It's super user-friendly and heats up quickly, ready to serve you your favorite espresso in either a 1.35oz or 5oz size.
Users say this machine can be noisy.
Get the best single-serve espresso every single time. This Nespresso CitiZ & Milk Espresso Machine by De'Longhi uses a 19 bar pump system that perfectly extracts the delicious flavor of every Nespresso Original Coffee capsule. The water tank is 34oz and is easily removable for quick access and cleaning.
The Aeroccino 3 milk frother enables you to make a delightful cappuccino or latte. The drip tray is foldable so you can use taller glasses for this machine as well. The compact design allows this machine to fit in small kitchens - perfect for an apartment or shared space.
Heat up time is 25 Seconds, and there is an auto shut off feature after 9 minutes (can be extended to 30 minutes).
This Nespresso machine is currently on sale on Amazon for $208.96 (originally $299.00). Perfect for a couple or single adult, and makes for a great gift.
15-second heat time, large capacity water tank, and easy to use and clean.
Doesn't allow for much customization.
This VertuoLine Nespresso brews both coffee and cappuccino with the single press of the button. It's super easy to use between the intuitive control panel and code technology written into every pod.
And the sliding tray allows you to choose your cup size.
While it doesn't come with a milk connection, you can sometimes pick up this model with an Aeroccino Plus for even cheaper than the Nespresso Vertuo model. You gotta love that!
Heats up in 15 seconds and will shut off automatically after 9 minutes.
While the standard price is $200, you can often find great deals on this machine, making it a real budget option.
Amazingly simple to make ridiculously delicious coffee, large water and milk reservoirs, and allows you to customize to your liking.
Pricey and does require some maintenance.
No matter what you want to make with this coffee machine, it's easy to use. The interface walks you through every step of the process, whether you're making coffee or servicing your machine. You get notifications for every step of the process as well, which we love.
Cleaning is simple with cycles that handle much of the work (and all you need to do is flip a switch). There's also a light by the coffee outlet which is great for dark corners.
And, on top of all of this, you can customise the already excellent coffee settings to your liking.
Heat up time: Heats up in 25 seconds and will automatically shut off after 9 minutes.
The MSRP is $800, but you can often find this for about half the price. Yes, that's expensive, but this is perhaps the most impressive machine you can find in this range.
Makes great espresso with impressive crema, good energy rating and easy cleaning, and features 2 programmable switches.
Some pods crush in the machine and it can be a little noisy.
Though this Nespresso machine has a plastic-based construction, the quality of it is undeniable - and it's got a solid A Class energy rating.
There are 2 programmable switches for espresso and lungo and you can make bigger espressos by holding the button down for a little longer. That, plus the foldable drip tray, means you can make amazing coffee every single time.
And if you're a Breville kind of a person, you can pick up the same machine from that manufacturer.
Heats up in 25 seconds and features auto shut off after 9 minutes.
The MSRP is $200, but you can usually pick it up for less. And, if you're not picky about the brand that manufactures it, you may want to check out the Breville model to see if it comes in any cheaper.
1-touch cappuccino or latte with quiet operation, removable, easy-to-clean milk container, and super easy to use and programmable too.
Smaller water tank, and it's a little pricey.
If you want great cappuccinos and lattes, you really need to look into this machine.
It's got 5 different milk and coffee options - and the milk operation is remarkably quiet and easy to clean and maintain. Indeed, cleaning the overall machine is super easy, as is maintenance (and there's an indicator for that).
Plus, making drinks is even easier with illuminated keys and automatic controls.
Heats up in 40 seconds and you can set it to automatically shut off anywhere between 30 minutes and 8 hours.
The MSRP is $500, but most of the time you should be able to find this machine for much less. And, for what you get, it's absolutely worth it.
Hotter than the original Vertuo, fantastic cleaning cycle, make coffee or espresso - no worries.
Doesn't have an indicator to let you know the water tank is running low.
If you want a range of coffees and espressos, this is the machine for you. It's got it all and a gigantic water tank to boot. As the VertuoLine grows in popularity, you can expect the variety of flavors to do the same.
Plus, the centrifusion tech totally surpasses the crema you'll get in place of the standard 19 bar pressure.
And, in case you've heard that these machines don't produce hot enough coffee, you can rest assured that the problem has been fixed with this particular model.
Heats up in 15 seconds and shuts off automatically after 9 minutes.
For a machine of this calibre, paying the usual price of roughly $230 is really not bad at all.
Includes water tank-level indicators, folding drip tray for a variety of cups, and convenient cord storage.
Some large mugs don't fit easily, and a few users find it on the noisy side.
There's a lot of reasons to love this particular Nespresso model, beginning with the wonderfully small footprint and easy to use system. Indeed, it's got just about everything you need for an amazing cup of coffee.
We particularly like the programmable buttons for cappuccino as well as lungo, the convenient power cord storage, and that this machine falls in the energy consumption class of A-40%.
Finally, if you're more of a De'Longhi type of person, you can pick up virtually the same model by this brand. If you don't have a preference, you may be happy to learn that there's usually one on sale.
Heats up in 25 seconds and will shut off automatically after 9 minutes.
It's not the cheapest option on the block, but the MSRP of $230 is quite reasonable. If you can pick it up cheaper, don't wait.
Whether you snoozed your morning alarm clock a few times too many or just want a quick cup of excellent coffee at any time of the day, a Nespresso machine is a lifesaver.
Not everybody has the skill to brew the same flawless cup of coffee every time. A Nespresso machine is made to do just that.
A Nespresso machine works with capsules. These capsules contain 100% ground coffee. It is not instant, and it doesn’t contain any kind of additives; no sugar or milk. Just pure coffee. The idea is that you pop a capsule in the machine, press a button, and voila! A perfect cup of coffee–at the touch of a button. It’s the lazy coffee lover’s dream!
There are Nespresso machines that allow you to experiment with the strength. Some are designed solely for espresso while others make superior gran lungo. Ultimately, choosing which Nespresso machine to buy will depend on your preferences.
Here are a few things to consider before making your purchase:
Types of Nespresso Machines
There are two lines of Nespresso single-serve machines. Each are outfitted with different brewing technologies and tailor-made for a particular range of Nespresso coffee capsules. As such, the capsules are machine-specific; OriginalLine capsules do not work in VertuoLine machines and vice versa.
OriginalLine – These machines only brew espresso and espresso-based drinks such as lungo (espresso made with more hot water than usual), and ristretto (espresso made with less hot water than usual). Similar to an espresso maker, these devices brew coffee with hot water and up to 19 bars of pressure. The result is outstanding espresso that can rival, if not surpass, your favorite coffee shop’s brew. These machines accommodate third-party coffee capsules which gives you more blend and flavor options.
VertuoLine – This newer line of machines makes espresso as well as regular coffee in a wider array of serving sizes: 1.35 oz espresso, 2.7 oz double espresso, 5 oz gran lungo, 7.7 oz coffee, and 14 oz alto. These devices use Nespresso's very own Centrifusion (centrifugal force and water infusion) technology to make coffee. This method produces a smooth and flavor-filled extract. A barcode system automatically adjusts rotational speed, temperature, water flow, and infusion time to conform to a capsule's precise brewing requirement. The product code scanning mechanism guaranteed that only Nespresso capsules are compatible with these machines.
Brands and Licensees
The machines are exclusively made by Eugster/Frismag as the original equipment manufacturer for Nestlé, Nespresso’s parent company. Since January 2017, machines carrying the Nespresso name have been manufactured and distributed by kitchenware industry giants Breville, De’Longhi, and KitchenAid. Other companies like Krups, Sage, and Magimix have licensing agreements with Nestlé to produce their own line of Nespresso machines. This abundance of accredited, reputable manufacturers assures the consumers with a broadened choice of high-quality machines, features, designs, and colors.
The Range of Nespresso Machines
Below is an overview of Nespresso’s extensive selection of official models for its OriginalLine and VertuoLine coffee capsules.
Essenza: This model is one of the most affordable certified Nespresso machines. Extremely compact and ergonomic, it carries basic, essential features.
Inissia: Small, lightweight, and available in different colors, this inexpensive entry-level machine is ideal for those who appreciate a straightforward, fuss-free espresso.
Pixie: Its built-in water heater reaches optimum brewing temperature in as little as 25 seconds. It has a slightly larger water tank and capsule bin than the Essenza collection.
CitiZ: Its sleek yet practical design will give any kitchen a touch of urbane flourish. It has a fold-down grid to accommodate different cup sizes.
KitchenAid: This line of machines is for anyone who loves vintage 1930s design. It has the iconic KitchenAid dome shape, knobs and levers in place of buttons, and a predominantly metal build. Its features are top-notch with a removable 1.4-liter water tank. The only thing it lacks is a milk frother.
U-Series: This bracket includes three models: a standard variant for espresso, lungo, or ristretto coffee; the U-Milk that comes with an external Aeroccino milk frother; and the U-Mat which has all the features of the U-Milk plus an elegant matte finish.
Prodigio: This is Nespresso’s original series of smart machines. Its Bluetooth connectivity allows you to remotely brew coffee, set brewing schedules, keep track of the coffee pod count, and alert you if the machine is running low on water or needs descaling. These can all be done through a smartphone app. There’s the standard Prodigio for water-based coffee and the Prodigio & Milk for frothed brews.
Expert: Nespresso’s newest line of connected machines has more advanced smart features such as remote adjustments of brew settings and notifications on machine defects that may require repairs or assistance from Nespresso. Like its predecessor, the Prodigio, the Expert model is Bluetooth-connected and controlled via a smartphone app. It has three different temperature settings and a new Americano cup size.
Lattissima: This range of machines caters to milk-based coffee lovers. It features a milk carafe for convenient, one-touch dispensing. An integrated milk frother offers quick and easy milky brews. Adjust taste, strength, and milk froth texture with one-touch buttons for espresso, capuccino, latte macchiato, or long coffee. It has an automated descaling alert function.
Creatista: Made from stainless-steel alloy with a digital display and a 1.5-liter water tank, this model is designed to impress. Its incorporated steam pipe has eleven milk temperature settings and eight milk texture levels. It has a three-second heat-up time for genuinely instant coffee. The cheaper, standard version has a plastic and metal hybrid assembly, fewer milk temperature and texture levels, and a longer heat-up time.
Maestria: A barista-grade range of machines, it possesses all the conceivable controls to fine-tune coffee to your exact preference. It’s great for people who love the coffee-making ritual because it affords an authentic, immersive experience. A built-in steam wand lets you regulate the milk froth’s thickness and heat. A specially designed Barista Kit that includes a cappuccino duo set and shaker is sold separately.
Vertuo: Introduced in 2014 and designed for Nespresso's new line of coffee pods, this category of machines is excellent for making espresso and larger cups of coffee with a robust crema presence. It comes in two models: the standard Vertuo with a 1.6-liter water tank, and the VertuoPlus with a movable 1.8-liter water tank and an automatically closing capsule lever. Both versions can be purchased with a bundled Aeroccino milk frother.
Are the Features for You?
All the models have various features, functions, and areas of expertise. By deciding on what type of coffee you prefer, you’ll be able to narrow down your options to a more practical short list of contenders. Additionally, consider cup size, kitchen space, your schedule, lifestyle, and other factors.
Instead of purchasing the most feature-filled model, choose a machine that’ll suit your needs and preferences. Remember that the most desirable features are the ones you’ll actually benefit from.
Ease of Use
You’re buying a Nespresso machine for comfort and convenience. Make sure that the controls, buttons, or touchscreen are clear and simple to navigate. You shouldn’t have to thumb through the instruction manual every time you need to make a cup of coffee. If you’re a Nespresso newbie or not particularly tech-savvy, opt for a less complicated machine.
Over a period of time, coffee machines develop deposits of calcium and lime from water through a natural process called calcification. Limescale can clog your machine and unfavorably affect the flavor of your coffee.
Descaling will remove this buildup of minerals to keep your coffee tasting fresh and prolong the lifespan of your machine. Fortunately, Nespresso machines are relatively easy to clean and descale. Except for filling and rinsing the water tank and drip tray, the descaling procedure is mostly automated and won't take more than twenty minutes.
Nespresso recommends descaling your machine approximately every three months. But if you use your machine frequently and want to ensure that it produces the best flavor, you should descale after every 300 capsules. Some high-end models have automated mechanisms that alert you when descaling is required. Nespresso sells a descaling kit for its machines but you can use inexpensive third-party descaling solutions.
Ninety percent of coffee is water, so the kind of water you use is vital. Never use tap water to make coffee. Use only bottled or filtered water. This will result in a cleaner coffee flavor and less scaling on the machine.
If you're a capuccino fan, you'd want a machine with a built-in or external milk frother. There are several models that don't have either. So, frother-less Nespresso machines can be purchased with a bundled Aeroccino milk frother for around $40 more. The Aeroccino is sold separately for $65, so that's something to keep in mind.
Try Different Blends
Nespresso has dozens of pods for its OriginalLine and VertuoLine machines. Have fun and be more adventurous with your choice of capsules. Explore and experiment with various blends and exotic flavors. Heaps of third-party capsules compatible with OriginalLine machines dramatically expand the variety of brews to try out.